Placerville businesses try to stay open amid PG&E’s latest power shutoffs

Local News

PLACERVILLE, Calif. (KTXL) – Pacific Gas and Electric Company has shut off power to thousands of Northern Californians to prevent its lines from sparking new wildfires.

“We rely on this guy. He works, he works pretty good!” said Aldred Griffin, owner of Placerville Public House.

Griffin told FOX40 Sunday that he is determined to make sure power shut offs don’t leave his restaurant powerless with the help of a generator.

“It’s hard for us to shut down. We’re such a small business. Losing a day’s worth of sales is not something that’s easy to do,” Griffin explained.

He said he plans to keep Placerville Public House up and running through the outages, offering a limited menu.

“We’re used to it, you know? It’s the year of 2020. We have nothing else to do but just keep on going,“ Griffin said.

Tod Pickett told FOX40 he is sick and tired of having to overcome this year’s hurdles.

“We were closed 57 days due to COVID, so they’re making it tough on small business,” Pickett explained.

His store, Man Cave Placerville, will have to close when the power’s down.

“My internet goes out and I can’t use my credit card processing. So yeah, I do shut down,” Pickett said.

With scorching temperatures and gusty winds in the forecast, these towns are more like tinderboxes Sacramento Metro Fire Captain Chris Vestal explains. 

“These conditions are going to pre-dry fuels. So, everything is ready to ignite. It will carry combustion. And we’ll see explosive fire growth if anything starts,“ Vestal said.

While business owners understand the danger, they say it does not make the days in the dark any less difficult.

“What it does for downtown and what it does for small businesses is really devastating,” Pickett said.

PG&E said it’s hoping to have power restored in most areas by Monday evening.

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